Adam Bosworth says he decided to launch his website Keas after his mother became ill with ovarian cancer. “I experienced the best and the worst of American healthcare.” The former head of google health, adds he was particularly concerned about the lack of online access to health information that his mother needed while she was confined to homecare.
The mission of Keas, says Bosworth,”is to help you understand what your health data means and how you can use it to be as healthy as possible.” Keas will give users free personalized tools and advice they need to live a healthy lifestyle. “If we fix this problem and give people tools on how to be healthy and what they need to do, specifically for them, I think that’s going to make a serious dent, and that’s why I started the company.”
When comparing his site to other healthcare sites on the web (WebMD, Health.com, portal site health sections, etc.), Bosworth says it is the personalized plans for specific individuals that sets Keas apart from the rest of the category. “Everything we do is personalized for you. For example, a healthcare plan for a diabetic is not about all diabetic patients; it will be personalized for a specific, individual diabetic patient. Because medicine is not a one size fits all model.”
Through a partnership with Quest Diagnostics, any person who has lab data analyzed by Quest can have it automatically submitted to Keas for inclusion within their Keas care plan. Patients will also have the option to submit data received from their doctor on their own. Keas has also created an open model of learning from the web. Any qualified agent can work with Keas users to build a personalized care plan.
keas.com which officially launched on October 6th, currently has users that number in the tens of thousands. Once registered, a new user will be given the chance to enter key health data on their own or have their doctor provide through Quest Diagnostics. While the user will automatically be assigned to a basic health plan option (usually men or women’s health), they will also have the opportunity to sign up for a health plan focused on a particular health concern. Users can opt to receive weekly reports on their care plan via e-mail, or they can choose to have daily interaction with their care plan via text message (for example, providing/receiving updated information on a daily basis and receiving reminders to take medication). If the Keas experts detect alarming information, the user will be instructed to contact their personal doctor.
“Fundamentally, we’re spending 2.4 Trillion dollars a year in healthcare and we’re spending it because we wait for everyone to get sick and then we do incredibly expensive procedures,”Bosworth says. “What we don’t do is change the lifestyles that by in large lead to these procedures and debt.”
He says Keas care plans are currently free, but the webisite is actively polling users to determine the monetary value of the plans. “We’re working very hard to come up with a model that is affordable by all.”
Bosworth spent 25 years building databases and software, most recently for Google. While he felt he had done a lot of good work, Bosworth says he began to question if he had done anything that really helps the world. “You get to a certain point in your life where you start to ask yourself, What have I done and what can I do?”